Cincinnati Reds first baseman Joey Votto was hit by a pitch on Wednesday afternoon against the Chicago White Sox. He initially remained in the game, but was pulled later on with what the Reds called a left thumb injury during the game.
“He did fracture his thumb on the hit by pitch,” manager David Bell said after the game. “It’s nothing that requires surgery – it’s as basic as breaks go, but it’s going to be weeks, 3-4 weeks before we have him back.”
This is a bad break, no pun intended, for the Cincinnati Reds. There’s not much first base experience on the roster. Mike Moustakas has some limited experience there. So does Alex Blandino. The Reds could also potentially look down in Triple-A. No decision has been made thus far as to where the team will go.
“We just started the conversation,” said Bell about how they would fill the first base spot in Votto’s absence. “Maybe it’s good that we have the day off tomorrow and we have several different ways we can go with it. I think we’ll all just sleep on it and know no matter which way we go it will be a good call and the right call, we’ve just got to kind of figure it out.”
Of course the team could get quite creative if they wanted to. The team could try something like moving Mike Moustakas to first base, Nick Senzel to third base, and have Tyler Naquin or Shogo Akiyama start in center field once Akiyama is ready to return from the injured list.
“A little bit surprised,” Votto said about finding out his thumb was broken. “I knew I was in pain. I thought I was being a baby. I wanted to stay in the game, but I didn’t think I could grip the bat and I was having a hard time putting my glove on. But I could run and I was moving well and thought just give it time it should shake at some point. Maybe it’s just one of those things – like your thumb gets jammed in a door or something like that and it just goes away. It broke. What are you going to do?”